Nuzzle & Cuddle



Doves love to nuzzle to show their affection. Their favorite is to preen or be preened on the head, neck and face of their companion, baby, friend or human. It is particularly enjoyed by doves since they are unable to preen the feathers of their own heads, necks and faces.


Nuzzling is what the male is wanting when he is wing flicking and doing his mating call. Nuzzling between a bonding pair can lead to billing and mating.



Usually, nuzzling is silent, but some doves are more animated than others. My favorite ivory dove made all kinds of cute noises when she was cuddling against my neck.

Click to hear her sounds: Cuddle1


Physical Description:

Nuzzling is very important because it helps the recipient remove feather shaft wax, bugs and debris from the feathers where the dove cannot reach without assistance. It is nice if the dove can find someone to nuzzle with at least once per day. If your dove does not have a mate, then be sure to softly rub your dove on the head, face and neck to help remove the feather wax and it also feels good to the dove. They may also try to nuzzle under your chin if they are tame enough. 

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Birdie loves to have his head rubbed

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Babies and molting doves must preen the wax from new feather shafts but are unable to reach their own heads other than by scratching with their foot